Condominium and Cooperative Law in Ohio
Cooperatives and condominium developments are examples of arrangements known as "common interest communities."
These residential communities are composed of a single piece of land, occupied by one or more buildings, each of which contains more than one housing unit. The units are owned or leased by the people who live in them, but the buildings themselves, and the land they sit on, are owned either collectively by the residents, or by some third party. The residents are responsible for the upkeep of the buildings and the common areas of the property (walkways, lawns, swimming pools, etc.). To that end, they usually pay a periodic fee to cover maintenance.
If you simply look at a condominium or cooperative community, you likely won't be able to tell if it's one or the other.
There are no physical features distinct to either one, which can be used to distinguish them. Rather, the difference lies in the legal arrangement that governs the relationships between the residents and managers. In condominium communities, the residents own the units they live in, and collectively own the land and buildings in which they are located. In a cooperative community, the units are rented, and are owned by a single entity.
Laws and Regulations Concerning Common Interest Communities in Lakewood, Ohio
Various Lakewood, Ohio laws affect common-interest communities. However, almost all of these laws govern real estate more generally, and there are very few laws written particularly for common interest communities. Such generally-applicable laws include zoning regulations, contracts, and the relations between landlords and tenants.
In general, the procedures of the landowner or management board will have a much greater impact on the daily lives and conduct of residents than any state or local laws controlling condominiums or cooperatives.
The owner or manager of the property on which your unit sits will likely have a significant number of regulations concerning what can be done in and around the housing units. These rules will likely concern cleanliness, noise, and policies governing the presence of pets and long-term guests.
The power of landowners is limited, however, and there are some rules that cannot be given legal effect. For example, in Lakewood, Ohio, any rule which would exclude residents based on their race is completely unenforceable. Such discrimination is clearly prohibited under federal law, private property rights notwithstanding.
Can a Lakewood, Ohio Attorney Help?
If you have problems with your landlord, your homeowners association, or a neighbor, a reputable Lakewood, Ohio real estate lawyer may prove invaluable.